Computer help forum: EFI questions

by: wpgwpg January 8, 2013 8:36 AM PST

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EFI questions

by wpgwpg - 1/8/13 8:36 AM

OK, I'm new to EFI so I have some questions about it in trying to get up to speed with this new (to me anyway) technology. I've read a couple of articles on the subject (Wikipedia has a nice write up) and I've seen some of Bob Profitt's comments about how it changes the backup and recovery scenario. I see that it can replace the BIOS and the MBR. OK, so it uses tables to determine how to load the OS. Fine, but aren't the tables on the hard drive? What Windows 7 and 8 systems, if any, are using EFI now? My 5 month old Dell Inspiron 620 doesn't seem to use it, and neither does my year old Toshiba Satellite L755 laptop, both run Windows 7.
On my 64 bit Windows 7 Home Premium I see there's a C:\Windows\Boot\EFI folder with a good bit of stuff in it; is that the tables EFI uses? How does EFI know where those tables are? I take it that this is supposed to make the computer less vulnerable to malware (in addition to getting away from 16 bit addressing), but if the EFI tables are on the C: drive, why does EFI make things more secure, and why does this complicate backup and restore? Since it doesn't use the MBR, how does EFI know where to find where to load Windows? Something has to tell it, so I assume the Windows install process must do that, is that right? If so, doesn't that mean the EFI is just as vulnerable as the BIOS is to malware? I see Norton Ghost doesn't support Windows 8 yet, but Easeus todo Backup Home does. Doesn't that mean that I can back up my Windows 8 partition and use it to recover similar to the way I do with Windows 7 and Vista?
TIA

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